Want to hot smoke some salmon?
Not only is super delicious, but salmon is also incredibly healthy!
And the pellet grill is a fantastic way to infuse those salmon fillets with a smoky flavor with an absolute minimum of fuss.
You don’t want to end up with dry salmon, so make sure you follow my steps below!
Wood Pellet Recommendations for Salmon
The wood pellets you choose play the biggest role in infusing the fish with flavor.
You can buy pre-prepared mixed blends specific to the meat type or buy a specific type of wood, such as fruits or hardwoods.
Light, clean flavors such as applewood cherry wood, pecan, or maple are perfect for delicate meat such as fish.
The sweet smoky flavors gently enhance the salmon during the cooking process, without overpowering it.
But don’t be afraid to experiment and try different flavor combinations.
To Brine, or Not to Brine Salmon?
It’s not necessary to brine when smoking salmon.
The lemons will infuse the fish with enough moisture during the smoking process and keep the whole cooking process a simple one.
If you prefer to brine though, a simple dry brine of kosher salt, black pepper, fennel seed, and brown sugar applied will do the trick.
Coat the fish, place on a baking tray skin side up, cover, and leave to cure overnight.
How Long Does Salmon Take to Smoke in a Pellet Grill?
Salmon only takes 1 hour at 265-300°F to cook.
You want it to reach an internal temperature of 145°F before removing it from the grill.
You need to remember that thicker pieces of salmon will take longer than smaller ones.
What is the Best Salmon for Smoking?
Salmon is a very tasty fish, plus it’s good to smoke due to its high-fat content.
Chinook and sockeye are the most popular types of salmon to smoke.
Remember: The larger the fillet of salmon, the higher the oil content will be.
The final results will be more tender and flavorsome when smoked.
Why Smoke Salmon on a Pellet Grill?
Smoking on a pellet grill is super simple! No need to monitor the fire or temps!
You just set the temperature and the pellets are automatically fed into the fire pit by the auger, and then lit by the ignitor.
You can rest easy knowing all the work is done, with no need to adjust airflow or wood chip levels, it’s all taken care of.
8 Simple Steps for Smoking Salmon in the Pit Boss
Salmon, or any piece of fish for that matter, is incredibly quick and easy on the wood pellet grill.
Just cover in a flavoring, put on the grill, set the temperature, and let your mouth water in anticipation.
What Your Need For Hot Smoked Salmon
- Piece of salmon
- Fresh Lemon, sliced
- Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper
Step 1: Preheat Your Grill
Preheat the grill to 225F. If you’re using a Pit Boss, turn it to the “Smoke Setting”.
Load the pellet hopper with the wood chips of your choice.
Step 2: Check The Salmon For Bones
While the grill is heating, remove the salmon fillets from the packaging and rinse off under cold running water.
Pat dry with a paper towel.
When dry, run your fingers over the fillet, feeling for any bones that missed removal.
Remove with tweezers and discard.
Step 3: Season The Salmon
Season the piece of fresh salmon fillet with pink salt and ground pepper.
Place the lemon slices in a layer over the fish.
Step 4: Smoke The Salmon at 225°F
The smoker should be set at a relatively low temperature, around 225F for low indirect heat.
Place the pieces of fish in.
Leave in the smoker for one to two hours, to allow time to infuse all the smoky wood flavors.
The cooking time will depend largely on the size of the piece of fish.
Step 5: Monitor The Internal Temperature of The Salmon
When the internal temperature reaches 145F-150F, it’s time to remove the salmon.
Monitoring the temperature with a meat probe will be the best indicator of when the fish is cooked.
Step 6: Plate and Serve
Serve with a fresh salad or just cooked vegetables.
The lemon juice and smoky flavor combine to enhance the freshness of the fish.
Should Use You a Grill Basket?
Using a grill basket or grill mat may be a good idea when smoking delicate meat such as salmon.
It’ll prevent the fish from crumbling through and keep your grill fresh and easy to clean.
How to Serve Salmon
Below are a few ways we love to serve smoked salmon.
- In a Smoked salmon salad:
Crumble the smoked salmon into a wonderfully fresh salmon salad. Then top with mayonnaise and a squeeze of lemon
2. Salmon and cous cous
Place your salmon fillet on a bed of couscous, smoked asparagus, zucchini, and fresh lemon!
Hot Smoked Salmon on a Pellet Grill
- Pit Boss Grill
- 1 lb Salmon
- Fresh Lemon sliced
- Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper
- Preheat the grill to 225F. If you’re using a Pit Boss, turn it to the “Smoke Setting”. Load the pellet hopper with the wood chips of your choice.
- While the grill is heating, remove the salmon fillets from the packaging and rinse off under cold running water.
- Pat dry with a paper towel. When dry, run your fingers over the fillet, feeling for any bones that missed removal. Remove with tweezers and discard.
- Season the piece of fresh salmon fillet with pink salt and ground pepper. Place the lemon slices in a layer over the fish.
- The smoker should be set at a relatively low temperature, around 225F for low indirect heat.
- Place the pieces of fish in. Leave in the smoker for one to two hours, to allow time to infuse all the smoky wood flavors.
- When the internal temperature reaches 145F-150F, it’s time to remove the salmon.
- Serve with a fresh salad or just cooked vegetables.
How do you like to serve your salmon?
Author: Charlie Reeves
Hi, I’m Charlie, I am head taste tester at Simply Meat Smoking! I love it grilling, smoking, and getting out in the yard with the kids! The family also love to test all my recipes (especially my EXTRA CRISPY pulled pork, smoky pork loin, and ANY SEAFOOD I grill)
You will usually find me playing with the kids, perfecting my brisket bark, or sipping beers with boys around the fire. Can’t wait to share all my delicious smoking and grilling adventures with you!
You can read more on our About Us page.
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